Although All Ohio Black might have been in the midst of a rebuilding summer, they still walked away successful as a number of players elevated their stock. This program is poised to do big things next summer and beyond.
The standard is set high for the Nike Travel team from the Midwest. Last year’s collection of talent was led by the No. 1 player in the class of 2014 Kelsey Mitchell of Cincinnati, Ohio, rolled through opponents all summer long. She was joined by ELITE 100 prospects such as No. 16 Alexa Hart of Cleveland, Ohio, No. 33 Kathryn Westbeld of Kettering, Ohio, No. 42 Makayla Waterman of Dayton, Ohio, and No. 44 Mychal Johnson of Huntington, W.V. After graduating all of this talent, coach Jay-Bee Bethea decided to retool by investing in younger players. If this summer is any indication, he should expect big dividends in years to come.
PeachStateBasketball.com Tournaments Attended:
Real Deal in the ‘Ville Session I
Real Deal in the ‘Ville Shootout
Elite 32 Summer Jam Session I
Elite 32 Summer Jam Session II
Cierra Rice – 2015
Kaayla McIntyre – 2015
Nia Ahart – 2017
Cierra Hooks – 2017
Valencia Myers – 2018
Bexley Wallace – 2018
Program Notes from Jay-Bee Bethea:
Coach Bethea said that this travel season was by far his most difficult in the 15 years that essay on my aim in life to become a lawyer he has coached. The challenge that he faced was not on accident as he told Peach State Basketball this afternoon, “We knew that there was no way we could replicate what we did in the summer of 2013. So I sat down with our coaches and we decided that our top team would house some of the nation’s best in the 2017 class and beyond.”
While coach Bethea says that he has played younger players in the past, he has never put forth a team that was so youth-centric. Bethea says, “Sometimes you have to wear two hats. I wear a coaching hat and a general manager hat all of the time. The general manager in me knew that we had to go young to be successful in the long run.”
He went on to say, “This was challenging because it forced me to practice what I preach. If I am telling the girls to get better, I had to get better myself. I had to study film and look for ways to put the girls in better situations to win. But in the end, it was fun. The challenge helped us all grow.”
When asked what the highlight of the year was, he says “Seeing the kids grow as people is the most satisfying part of all of this. The basketball court takes care of itself, but to see the older kids take care of the younger ones, that is what I will remember the most.”
This year’s team was led largely in part by class of 2015 guard Cierra “CeCe” Rice of Grosse Pointe, Mich., essay writers writing help who is an ELITE 150 watch list prospect. Her energy on the defensive end and expanded offensive production led college coaches from Auburn , Dayton, Illinois, Minnesota and Northwestern to follow her all summer long. Rice’s production was matched on the interior from class of 2015 power forward Kaayla McIntyre of Toledo, Ohio. Her skill and strength allowed her to make plays and score consistently in the paint. She picked up a number of offers as a result of her production during July. Before suffering a knee injury, Wright State commit Deja Turner of Fort Mitchell, Ky., used her sharp shooting to stretch the defense for coach Bethea.
Coach Bethea says, “The unsung heroes of this team are Jaliyah Moses and Shantell Bostick. Their hustle and heart always came at the right time and helped us stay together as a team.” The class of 2015 guards from Cincinnati, Ohio, played big minutes all summer long and found ways to produce even when they did not have the ball in their hands.
Another player that may not have got the recognition she deserved at times was 6-4 post Amber Wilks of Cincinnati, Ohio. According to coach Bethea, “Amber was always into the game, cheering and helping teammates out even if she did not get the minutes that other players got.”
The future is bright as All Ohio identified young talent and put them under the bright lights all summer long. While the growing pains were evident at moments, the bumps and bruises will pay off in the future. Next summer, class of 2016 West Virginia commit Mechela Cobb of New Albany, Ohio, life of pi essay help should step into the role that Rice played this year as leader and play maker. The class of 2017 back court combination of Nia Ahart of Detroit, Mich., and Cierra Hooks of Dayton, Ohio, will return and become the guard duo that everyone talks about. While the frontline tandem of class of 2018 prospects of Bexley Wallace of Pickerington, Ohio, and Valencia Myers of Solon, Ohio, have incredible length and skill that college coaches have already begun to swoon over.
The table is set for even more big things as All Ohio carried multiple teams with them all summer long. Coach Bethea raved about his freshman team who competed at the top of every bracket all summer long. Class of 2017 prospects such as Kynnedy Azubike, Deja Denham, Alexis Stover and Erica Johnson are all players that have picked up early interest from playing within the All Ohio organization. With the program set with talent and the lessons learned from this summer, be ready for coach Bethea’s teams to be back atop of the summer circuit again next summer.
ProspectsNationTV: All-Ohio Black versus Heroes Elite on July 23, 2014
Jonathan Hemingway is the Assistant Director of Scouting for the JumpOffPlus.com. The service is used by more than 150 colleges and universities nationwide. He also serves on the selection committee for the EBA All-American, Fab Five and Super 64 Camps. He has been involved in the community since 2002 as a coach, camp director and evaluator. You can reach him via email at JonathanHemingway@PeachStateBasketball.com and follow him on twitter @JLHemingwayPSB